Storm Leaves Thousands in the Dark

By: Rachel Thomas Email
By: Rachel Thomas Email

About 127,000 Consumer's Energy customers have been affected by the latest storm.

"That tends to be typical of ice storms, they cause a lot of outages," said Terry DeDoes of Consumer's Energy.

In Jackson County, more than 1,000 people are without power Monday.

"Being without power for 2 to 3 days is not pleasant. You can't cook, vacuume. Just turning the lights on and off and flushing is a big thing," said Joan Bernstein, who lives in Clarklake.

Electric officials say a quarter of an inch of ice can add 500 pounds of weight between electricity poles.

"When we get freezing rain, ice can accumulate on the lines and on trees. Potentially the lines can come off poles or have tree branches and trees fall over," said Jim Weeks of the Michigan Municipal Electric Association.

Smaller municipal electric companies to the south are receiving help from Lansing's Board of Water and Light. Consumer's Energy has pulled 450 crews together from across the state. It plans to restore power to the majority of its customers by Wedneseday.

"In a lightening storm, we can go and reset fuses. In an ice storm, we need to do a lot of rebuilding. So it takes a lot more time to do the labor intensive work that needs to be done," siad DeDoes.

Some harder-hit areas to the south like Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties could be without power until Thursday.

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  • by janice Location: Michigan on Feb 21, 2011 at 11:02 PM
    No working toilet-ewww! No showering or doing laundry or other housework-ok. The thing they didn't include is that without electricity, most people have no heat. Pipes can freeze & make a mess. People & pets can freeze to death. If there is somebody that uses oxygen or other electric equipment for health reasons, contact the electric company & I believe they will bring a generator to your house. Please, check on your friends & relatives to make sure they are safe & warm.
  • by Shawn Location: Jackson on Feb 21, 2011 at 08:01 PM
    I have power right now but the roads are getting worse by the hour. My next door neighboor got stuck in there driveway at the bottom after work. My sister lives in Adrian and roads are closed out there due to power outs, trees and light poles have fell on the roads.
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